An execution parade was killed prematurely this week by China’s state-run broadcaster CCTV.
ABC reports that the station aired an execution parade this week with the intention of broadcasting the death of a Burmese drug lord and three of his henchmen. The parade aired for about two hours but was canceled before the execution.
CCTV did not say why it decided to change its broadcasting plans but the decision may have been made after monitoring social networks like Weibo, China’s version of Twitter.
According to the Christian Post, a poll was started on Weibo by China News Week to gauge how people felt about the execution parade on TV. Initially, people seemed happy to see Naw Kham, who massacred 13 sailors aboard a Chinese Cargo ship in October 2011, march toward his death. But as the program reached its conclusions people’s attitudes toward the parade had changed.
One user wrote:
“Naw Kham should be executed no doubt. But CCTV’s live broadcast of the execution is a live parade on TV and the internet, this is not showing justice, this is showing power over flesh.”
Shi Yinhong, a professor of international relations at Renmin University in Beijing, said that the execution parade was meant to show the people of China that the government was serious about protecting them.
“I think [the broadcast] is compatible with what the government wants– to show the Chinese people that the government is serious about protecting them within the country and outside.”
Perhaps CCTV decided that they didn’t have to show the execution to get that point across.
Do you think that CCTV made the right decision by canceling the TV broadcast of the execution parade?